Callisto - Phase 1
|Callisto - Replaced in Phase 2
Portrayed by Katherine Moennig
|Xavier Institute - Staff
|March 29th, 1979
|the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Former leader of the Morlocks, Callisto has re-emerged after years in hiding and found herself in the last place she ever expected to be. She was killed when the mansion was destroyed by Dark Phoenix in January 2015.
- 1 Details
- 2 Biography
- 3 Physical Characteristics
- 4 Powers
- 5 Equipment
- 6 External Links
- 7 Trivia
- 8 Plots
- 9 Meta
Real Name: Unknown
Aliases: Alexandra Gabler, Alex, Cal
First Appearance: May 14th 2008
Place of Birth: New York, New York
Relatives: None known.
Education: None on paper.
Relationship Status: Single
Occupation: Various - odd-job person at the mansion, self-defense teacher, moonlighter for X-Factor Investigations
Team Affiliation: N/A
The Early Years
Callisto's single mother choked on her own vomit when she was three years old. She remembers very little of her earliest years in care - only a vague blur, a string of foster homes and concerned faces. A beautiful child, with big, light eyes and soft dark waves of hair, she charmed prospective parents, but she was an impossible child - willful, volatile and troublesome, constantly getting into scrapes and breaking toys, chairs, cots, escaping her room and frequently the house itself. By the time she was six years old her default sullen pout had set in and beautiful or not, people stopped fostering.
It was also when she was six years old that George the care worker took a special interest in her. The first time, she barely understood what was happening and was too shocked and confused to react at all. The second time, she broke his arm, and ran away.
Naturally she was found, and from then on she officially became a Problem Child, with all the extra attention, security and discipline that that entailed. She was prescribed medication for ADHD and her violent tendencies, and frequently left alone for days locked in her room to "calm down". Callisto didn't calm down. When she was eleven she ran away and this time she wasn't found.
Even Callisto doesn't remember exactly what happened over the next few years. She moved from gang to gang, pickpocketing, housebreaking, carjacking. By the time she was fourteen her sullen pout had apparently become appealing again and this time she took cash instead of breaking arms.
She took the name Callisto at sixteen, on her first night in a strip club after breaking into Callisto Pharmaceuticals company to steal drugs (they didn't, as it turned out, have anything with any street value). She thought it sounded cool, and it shortened well. To this day no one has told her who Callisto mythically was and she has never asked. No one remembers her real name, and she claims not to remember it herself.
By the time she was seventeen the politics and equilibrium of the streets were changing. It had long been known and accepted by the homeless, the gangs, the squatters, that some of them were Different, but now that these "Mutants" were entering the consciousness of society at large they were being singled out, even here. Callisto knew she heard and saw things no one else could, was far stronger and faster than her frame should support, healed more quickly than any normal human being should - although following an idiotic teenaged brawl with another mutant, a white-haired girl of around her own age, she was left with a nasty scar across her right eye that she wore a patch over for several years (see image), more out of affectation than any harm to the eye.
But Callisto was lucky - her mutations were easy to conceal, to pass off as luck or guesswork or trickery. Others weren't so fortunate. Though her years of hard learned survival senses screamed at her to look out for herself, just as she always had, her conscience wouldn't allow her to just stand by and watch these people - her people - be beaten and ostracized even here on the streets. They needed someone to pull them together, a leader. Hiding her reluctance, Callisto became just that. The Morlocks (she didn't pick the name, doesn't remember who did - thought it sounded cool) descended into the sewers and underground tunnels of New York and made their home there, slowly growing in size until they were a large collective, relying on each other to survive.
They had, however, caught someone's attention. The Morlock Massacre came as a complete shock to Callisto and her companions - it came from nowhere, utterly destroyed them, scattering the few survivors through the tunnels. Callisto, shot four times in the abdomen, near-death and deeply traumatised, dragged herself through the dark for days before she gained enough clarity of thought to leave the sewers.
Callisto was beaten. No amount of street vigilantism or crusading would match the sheer firepower and organisation of the opposition. Feeling her mortality in a way only the near-unkillable can, Callisto disappeared.
Watching and Waiting
The next six years or so were a depressing, repetitive run of small-time criminal activities, sex-work, and occasional body guarding and mechanics work, any legal occupation hampered by her lack of official existence. In latter years, however, a good number of other mutants operating in the city came to her attention.
Firstly, the white-haired woman who beat the hell out of her almost a decade ago on a more or less random encounter in the city. Callisto didn't know who the X-Men were or how exactly they operated, but with her instinctive ability to just Know other mutants, even in normal clothing/disguise, she'd been able to discern that Storm operated with a group of mutants who seem to work loosely with the city's authorities and help avert/deal with problems and emergencies. She didn't know how tight-knit or organised they were or how widely they operated, but she knew there was something going on there.
Furthermore, she knew nothing of X-Force or their activities, but following Storm she found the brownstone entirely inhabited by mutants, and from that made an assumption that there was at least some peripheral connection. Although her surveillance was casual at best, over a year or so she become aware of Remy and Ororo's relationship - which frankly struck her as perfectly appropriate: he slaughtered almost everyone she knew a few years before, and Ororo gave her the scar on her face.
She also learned during this time that Sarah Morlocke was alive and living in the building. Suppressing her initial instinct to go to her, she kept half an eye on her for over a year, relieved to know she was alive and eaten by guilt over running away from her back when the massacre happened, too scared of being rejected to reveal herself now.
Gene Nation, and After
Callisto was eventually forced out of hiding when Sarah was kidnapped by the remains of the more hardline Morlocks, now a mutant terrorist cell calling themselves Gene Nation. She went to Ororo, who recognised her from their encounter as teenagers but nonetheless was convinced to go to Remy to co-ordinate a rescue effort. Following the defeat of Gene Nation's leader, Berserker, on the part of Ororo (since he refused to recognised a challenge from Callisto herself), the remaining members of the cell disbanded, mostly dissipating above ground to various shelters and squats. Ororo saw some of these mutants into programmes that would aid their survival and, if desired, reintegration into society. Initially her attempts to convince Callisto to aid in this project were entirely unsuccessful, but in her new capacity as a mechanic and general maintenance person at the mansion, the ex-Morlock slowly found herself drawn into helping out in spite of herself and was soon making regular visits to the shelters where the displaced mutants were located. See the plot page for the full story.
Shake Hands With The Devil
In her new capacity as generic maintenance engineer at the mansion, Callisto found herself agreeing at short notice to accompany Red X on a mission to oversee and aid the first installation of a new low-tech, high-capacity water filtering system in a Red Cross camp in Sri Lanka. Due to regional politics that was entirely beyond Callisto's ken, the camp found itself filling with refugees from the surrounding area and essentially under-siege by the Indian military, including a mutant force 'Imperial Guard'.
Callisto was for the most part swept along, doing what she could to help along with the rest of the Red X team, but she did at one point venture outside the camp, unnoticed, to come to the aid of a civilian caught by an Indian soldier while attempting to reach the camp. Callisto was unable to save the civilian, and succeeded only in beating the soldier to the point of death, stopping only short of a killing blow. Unable to deal a blow that would at that point have been merciful she left both bodies, quietly re-entering the camp with the knowledge that for the first time in her life she had probably been directly responsible for the death of a human being. She told no one of the experience. See the plot page for the full story.
When Manhattan Island was attacked and taken over by a group of mutants, Callisto accompanied a team of combined X-Men and X-Force members, including Sarah Morlocke, into the old Morlock tunnels, acting as an extra pair of eyes and ears and a guide for the group along with Sarah. Following on from the experience, where for some time Sarah was missing, believed dead, the two former Morlocks had a chance to talk and went some way to healing their relationship, although they have a long way to go before everything's normal or easy between them.
Life At Xavier's
In early 2009, Callisto became the new self-defence teacher following Angelo's departure to focus on Elpis. Initially sharing the job with Morgan Lennox, she then held the position with Alexander Lexington, the two discussing the dilemma of preparing the students to defend themselves without severely injuring anyone with their powers.
For the most part, Callisto kept to herself, assisting various mansion residents (and others, like Amanda Sefton) with their cars and hanging out sometimes with Garrison Kane. It was this connection, as well as her occasional work with Red X, that got her into 'trouble', with her being involved in the India/Pakistan situation and then going undercover with the X-Men at a mutant roller derby competition, ending up on skates herself after Wasp was injured.
She was also still called upon for her connections as former leader of the Morlocks, such as the incident where Annalee kidnapped the New Mutants and took them to the Morlock Tunnels to be 'safe'. With a group of X-Men and Sarah Morlocke, Callisto helped subdue the brain-washed kids and took Annalee into custody. After that, Callisto became even more hermetic than before.
Due to her work at a District X shelter for homeless young people, Callisto ended up running into Warren Worthington while he was pursuing an X-Factor Investiations case in late 2011. Unable to turn down a request for help, Callisto was drawn into the hunt for a missing kid, and ended up agreeing to 'help out' XFI on a sporadic basis, reconnecting with sometime cordial acquaintance Vanessa Carlysle, recently returned from her abduction experience, and ending up moving into her spare room.
Callisto continued to return to the Mansion a few days a week to work in the garage and run self-defense training, and stepped up her volunteering work. She tentatively dipped her toe into the world of education, working toward a counselling qualification that might bring more funding into the shelter where she worked, and agreed to get more involved with XFI in due course.
Deal With The Devil & Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart
In December 2013, Callisto was one of several people abducted from the mansion by a horde of demons, taken to a small demonic dimension. While they escaped their captors their time in this Mini-Limbo warped them into darker versions of themselves, and by the time a group of 'pure in heart' X-Men came to rescue them, Callisto was almost unstoppable in her desolate, destructive rage, and wasn't stopped until she had been both engulfed in flames and had her back broken by Clarice with a teleported boulder.
Callisto was burned over more than 90% of her body in the demonic dimension. Unfortunately the nature of her healing factor didn't deal with this very well, tending toward covering her in painful scar tissue. So began a long course of literally scores of skin grafts to attempt to repair the damage, leaving her covered in a network of scars.
She additionally spent several months in a wheelchair due to her broken back, though once the spinal damage had repaired itself the rest of her recovery went quite quickly.
Her recuperation period was spend at the mansion, and during the course of it she had Adrienne help her move back there, her friendship with Vanessa having grown distant in the months before Callisto's abduction.
The Dark Phoenix
In January 2015, Callisto was part of an investigative team, going to Africa to locate the last known base of Apocalypse, following the destruction of Muir Island by his Dark Riders. While Apocalypse wasn't home, strange versions of themselves were, and they had to fight them off to be able to leave. From there the team went to India to help with the rescue of Jean Grey, suspected of genocide as part of her manifestation of the Phoenix. As part of the "heavy hitters", Callisto took a lot of punishment while engaging the Imperial Guard, but fared better than team-mates Rogue and Jessica Jones. Ounumbered and outgunned, once Jean was retrieved the groups retreated, escaping only through the sacrifice of Ororo Munroe and Remy LeBeau and a powers flare from teleporter Clarice Ferguson.
Upon returning to the mansion, the battered mutants discovered the fight was far from over as an alternate version of Jean, driven mad by the power of the Dark Phoenix, was attacking the school. Callisto died in the battle, sacrificing herself to save others.
Height: 5ft 8in
Weight: Callisto has a naturally slim and rather androgynous build, but due to her density she weighs around twice what you would expect, tipping the scale at about 200lbs/90kg.
Hair: Dark Brown - choppy, "just-out-of-bed" and generally somewhere between jaw and shoulder length at its longest.
Prior to Deal With the Devil
Piercings: Callisto used to wear various facial piercings, but has in recent years found that her body rejects foreign objects too quickly for them to last long. Sometimes she has usually self-inflicted surface piercings for fun or for a disguise, but they change as often as her clothing.
Tattoos: Around her left arm and down her left side, front and back, in a generically tribal sort of way that was cool when it was done and she just about pulls off now (see image).
Scars: Scar on the right side of her face, passing over but not affecting her right eye, another smaller scar on her right upper-lip, and four scars from large gunshot wounds on her abdomen.
Post Deal With the Devil
Callisto's former tattoos and scarring are gone, and she is instead covered in a network of scars from extensive and ongoing skin grafts.
Callisto has super senses - incredibly acute hearing (speech a few rooms away, whispering through a wall), superhuman vision including night vision (due to this she's a little hypersensitive to bright light and makes more of a point than most of wearing shades in sunny weather) and heightened senses of taste and smell.
She possesses superhuman reflexes (she could dodge a bullet but not a laser), balance (on a par with the world's best acrobats - but without having to think about it) and strength (car-lifting strength, not push-the-moon-out-of-orbit strength - never tested to its maximum). She's fast and has lots of stamina but doesn't possess a superhuman running speed (about 20 miles per hour). As such she also can't leap the proverbial tall buildings, although she can jump as far as any Olympic athlete and a good bit higher. Her hand-eye coordination is virtually perfect and she's functionally ambidextrous.
She heals more quickly than a normal human being, but not to excessive regenerative extents - she could heal even a bad break in the space of a day but can't regrow a limb, and serious wounds have in the past scarred - although mostly due to carelessness on her part during the record time her skin takes to knit back together. Her abilities would best (if embarrassingly) be compared to Buffy the Vampire Slayer at the height of her powers.
Though not a mutant power as such, as a result of her grace and heightened senses Callisto can learn new physical skills, whether sports, weapon use or fighting styles, at an almost supernatural speed. She learns the moves no faster than an average human being, but with her physical condition her body will do exactly what she wants it to first time, entirely circumventing the physical discipline aspect of training and leaving her with only the memory aspect to master. In the unlikely event that it were to happen his would extend to the technical and muscle memory aspect of musical instruments also, although she wouldn't learn to read music any faster than a human with a good ear.
Secondary power: As an extension to her super-senses, Callisto has an ability to find other mutants. She can't identify powers and can't find them on a map with her mind, but is naturally drawn towards them and just Knows somehow when she meets a mutant and, in a small group, would be able to make a good guess how many mutants there were. This was of considerable help to her during the early days of the Morlocks and helps to explain why they naturally gravitated towards her as a leader.
- Callisto generally carries at least two small fighting knives (weighted for throwing also) with her at all times, in ankle holsters, and if she thinks she might be heading into a risky situation will secrete more.
- She's been known to employ knuckle dusters in the past.
- She generally has a zippo lighter on her - she rarely smokes, but likes playing with fire.
- Callisto rides a second-hand 2000 model Suzuki Bandit that she bought as a near-wreck and fixed-up herself, and she doesn't care that everyone else has sexier vehicles than her.
- Callisto wore an eye-patch during the whole period she led the Morlocks and was generally assumed to be blind in her right eye.
- Although capable of learning any fighting style or sport in record time, Callisto has only ever learned to knife-fight, street brawl and play a mean game of basketball, though in recent years she's had brief brushes with archery and roller derby.
- She has never fired a gun.
- The alias 'Alexandra Gabler', used for her occasional above-board employment over the years, is taken from the name of a casual (not that Callisto has had any other kind) ex-lover. They bore a passing resemblance to each other and so Callisto stole her ID.
- Callisto discovered during her first time flying in 'Shake Hands With The Devil' that, perhaps unsurprisingly, aeroplanes leave her with severe tinnitus and balance problems for hours afterwards.
Former Player: Morag
Errata: Callisto was originally stated as being "Heavier than she looks but nonetheless pretty light." However, the player prompty forgot this, and instead she's been established as being, from her footstep and momentum, considerably heavier than someone her size should be. As such the bio has been amended.